How will District 39 spend one million dollars? Residents were given an opportunity to explore the 2013 projects at Thursday night’s Participatory Budgeting Expo, and we can say with absolute certainty that voting in April will be no easy task.
Here’s a recap of the projects in our neighborhood:
Attempting an escape from the southbound R station at Union Street is capable of tossing even the most cool, calm and collected over the edge. With only two exit turnstiles, and about 25,000 people on a daily basis, that’s understandable. The group ‘Let Us Out’ would like to see two additional turnstiles added to ease some of the congestion, and make the platform a safer place for commuters.
Tom Meany is spearheading a campaign to resurface a section of the Prospect Park running lane between 9th Street and Bartel-Pritchard Circle, a move that would also create a sustainable water drainage system.
Tom explained how the uneven state of the running lane tosses your whole body out of alignment. “It’s trauma on your joints. Everything. Your shoulders, your neck, your hips, and your knees. A flat surface is going to straighten your alignment.”
“In addition to that,” said Tom, “it’s going to be made from a porous surface that drains into an irrigation system. Presently, all the water goes into the sewers. What this would do is to take all the runoff from the road, and put it in a filtration system underneath the ballfields. From there, it would feed back into the water systems of the park, so it’s a green, sustainable, and recycling water system.”
If the project proves successful, the park’s entire running lane would be resurfaced.
The gang at PS 39 is hoping to receive funding for their storm water garden initiative. The proposed project is to add bioswales to the school yard, which will help catch rain run-off and prevent combined sewer overflow from running into the Gowanus Canal.
The John Jay Filmmaking Lab Project is looking to implement a new student lab on the high school campus. More than a technical program on the filmmaking process, the project offers kids a creative and therapeutic outlet to express themselves. According to the Millennium Brooklyn website:
This project will include a mobile Mac computer lab on a laptop cart (28 Macbook Pros), a mounted projector in the auditorium and an after school partnership with Reel Works, an organization that will provide class instruction to students and additional professional development to teachers to further enrich the curriculum.
We all know how frustrating outdated technology can be. The Groundswell Mural Project, who collaborates with around 800 low-to-moderate-income teens each year to create beautiful works of public art, is seeking a media upgrade at their President Street office space.
Upgrading the media network (computers, drives, external back-up, printers, and more) will allow more people to access Groundswell’s Public Art Archive more rapidly. It will give Groundswell staffers more time to dedicate to the implementation of projects, and increase workflow from within the Groundswell office.
Are you a fan of Celebrate Brooklyn?
BRIC needs a high-powered, long-throw video projector for the Prospect Park Bandshell. BRIC has a long history of eclectic and accessible film and music programming. They currently use a rented projector; and owning one would allow them to offer more film programming, with higher quality and reduced operating costs.
A breakdown of all the projects can be found on Councilmember Lander’s website later today.
Take a look, and decide for yourself where our million dollars should go. Voting takes place on Tuesday, April 2 – Thursday, April 4, from 7:30am – 8pm at Councilmember Lander’s office (456 5th Avenue, 3rd Floor). Vote on Saturday, April 6, from 10am – 7pm at the Old Stone House (336 3rd Street). The last day of voting is scheduled for Sunday, April 7, from 10am – 5pm at the Park Slope Armory YMCA (361 15th Street).
Voters must be 16 years or older, and live in the 39th City Council district. Visit PBNYC.org for details.